The dwindling revenue accruable from the federation account to the third tier of government in the country, the Local Government, has been described as one of the fundamental challenges hampering the growth and development of that sector.
The Chairman of Ankpa Local Government, Alhaji Abdul Isah, made this known while reacting to an award of best grassroots mobilization and development bestowed on him by the Kogi State Broadcasting Corporation, Lokoja, last week.
According to him, Local Government councils in Kogi State face the problem of over-bloated staff strength, adding that the problem has necessitated the reason why all council Chairmen in the State have lend their unalloyed support to the present administration’s efforts at bringing sanity to the councils.
On some of the achievements he has been able to record since assumption office to merit the award, he stated that within a short period of coming to power, his administration has been able to contribute to the overall development of the Local Government Area, adding that provision of basic amenities to improve the lives of his people is a task he takes seriously.
He mentioned some of his achievements till date to include the completion of electricity projects for Akatapia, Awo, Ofanyaka which was commissioned recently the executive governor of the state, capt Idris Ichalla Wada.
Another awardee and Chairman of Ogori/Magongo Local Government, Major Akerejola Ola Finmihan has described the challenge of Local Government Staff strength as a “disease” that all councils in Kogi State suffer. He described the practice where previous Chairmen employed indiscriminately without recourse to acceptable standard as a malady that needs addressing.
He informed that “universally, what determines employment is the ability to cater for the employees, and that is determined by the resources at the disposal of such organization, but that was not the case with council chairmen in the past, and we are suffering it now”.
Major Fimihan stated that the downturn effect that education has continued to suffer informed his decision to introduce free and compulsory primary education in his Local Government due to the importance that he places on the sector.
He said his Local Government aims to assist the Capt Wada led administration, which sees education as a cornerstone of his transformation agenda.